Last Step of Mindfulness…Effectiveness

Effectiveness is the last step in our mindfulness chapter. This is putting into play all the other Mindfulness elements.

1. Observe

2. Describe


3. Participate

4. Reserving Judgement

5. Mindful In the Moment

6. Effectiveness

Effectiveness is when you “focus on what works”. (handout 3)

We acknowledge what reality is, whether we like it or not, and do just what is needed in each moment.

Remember to stay in the current moment and not moments we would like to be in or that we should be in.

It is what it is. Now do what you can do in that moment.

If strong feelings try to come into that moment let them a train going down a track. Don’t jump on the train.

Reserve your judgement anddon’t cut off your nose to spite your face by judging your own judging“.(handout 3)

Keep your eye on the ball and go for it.





~Wishing You Well My Friends

The Mindful Gatekeeper


Reserving Judgement…Over Generalization

Over Generalization  is when a person sees a single negative event as a never-ending pattern.

If you have a date and it doesn’t work into a relationship you may say” I will never find the right person for myself..I will never get married”.


This person is ignoring me. They always ignore me. I will never be heard“.

I didn’t get the job. I never get the job I want“.

In this case look at the facts then add a cheerleading statement behind it.

Okay so the date didn’t work out. I can always try again“.


This person seems to be preoccupied. Maybe I can come back at another time and ask. It’ s great that I can see the truth here and let this moment just be what it is and not worry anymore”.

“So I didn’t get the job this time. But I am going to keep trying and eventually I know I will find a job I enjoy”.

~Wishing you well this day

The Mindful Gatekeeper

Reserving Judgement…Magnification/Minimization

This thinking error is when we increase or decrease the importance of an event.

Magnification is when we negatively exaggerate the weight of an occurance.

“If I make a mistake at work I may lose my job then I will lose my ability to pay for my car and house.” Everybody makes mistakes. Were all human. Sometimes we just have to do our best, take responsibility and believe we can learn from these occasions. Mistakes don’t have to be catastrophes.

Minimization happens when we do just the opposite. We understate the positive importance of an event.

“So what if I am getting an award for my hard work. It is no big deal to me..I don’t think I deserve it.” This is not being humble. It is downplaying something very important to your life. Learn to take credit where it is due. It is okay.

We are now down to just a few more thinking distortions that will be posted this week. Afterwards we will be moving onward with more Mindfulness.

~Wishing you well this day

The Mindful Gatekeeper

Reserving Judgement…Emotional Reasoning

Emotional Reasoning is when a person assumes that their negative emotions accurately reflect the truth of how things really are.

“I Feel this way, therefore it must be true.”

For instance:

I have housework to do and have feelings of disgust. My feelings of disgust overwhelm me and I believe that I must be a lazy person. I put off my housework which makes me feel even more disgust/laziness.


I feel incapable so I must be an inadequate somehow.
I feel worthless so I must be a bad person somehow.
I feel guilty so I must be guilty somehow.

This type of thinking can be very depressing. But all just a distortion. We can find a better way..

Remember we must look at the whole picture before judging it truth. We must use grey type thinking. Describe the facts only through what you can see, hear etc…not through our emotional responses.

Act opposite to the emotion. Do the housework anyways no matter the feeling you get. Break it up into easy segments if you must. Just do it anyways.

If you feel worthless I just want to say that you’re not. You are a blessing even if you can’t see it. This is where counseling helps. Sometimes we have to unlearn our distortions…learning to recognize them and learning to replace them with positive action.  We need support to do this many times. Support is a strength.

We can talk more about acting opposite later on.

~Wishing you well this day

The Mindful Gatekeeper

Reserving Judgement…Jumping to Conclusions

The next cognitive thinking error is a familiar one…Jumping to Conclusions.

Jumping to Conclusions is when you negatively interpret an experience even though there are no definite facts that beyond any doubt support your conclusion.

The facts matter when interpreting an event. Your emotional mind reacts to events but you can use mindfulness to slow the reaction down and see the moment with clarity.

If you find yourself Jumping to Conclusions perhaps making a list of the evidence will help you see the truth more precisely. Only the facts should be written down. Remember to acknowledge your thought and then let a thought be just a thought. Let it go and start fresh. We have that ability…every new moment of every day. What a blessing.

~Wishing you well this day

The Mindful Gatekeeper

Reserving Judgement…All or Nothing Thinking

In the post before last I started to touch on the cognitive thinking errors in regards to Reserving Judgment when learning Mindfulness. Cognitive thinking errors really do cloud judgement so I have decided to carry on with this subject for several more entries.

The next “error” I would like to discuss is All or Nothing Thinking.

This type of thinking error is when a person sees everything either in black or white.

This situation is totally awful or completely awesome…or even this person is totally awful or completely awesome...etc.  People think in absolutes when using this type of rationale.

This type of thinking causes our body to use the fight or flight response. It is a natural reaction in a reality based when a person is trying to save another person after a car wreck. In everyday life though it can create unnecessary stress.

Life is not all black and white there are many shades of grey in between. We need to stop and remember those grey areas when we find ourselves speaking in black and white categories. Don’t judge yourself if you do find yourself speaking that way..just Observe, let it go, and come back with a grey statement.

“This situation is not totally awful there are some neutral aspects and maybe even some good that I may or may not be able to see at this time.”

Some key words to watch for in your thinking and or verbal replies would be…Perfect, Impossible, Awful, Always, Completely, Ruined etc..remember this type of rationalization is based on absolutes.

~Wishing you well this day

The Mindful Gatekeeper